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Saki on Badr Hari: "Sometimes He Makes a Mistake Because he Fights Too Aggressive."

The showdown between Badr Hari and Gokhan Saki is just two days away now, with things reaching a critical mass for both fighters. At this point both men are done training and are simply wading through the final preparations before the big fight. In an interesting interview with Fighters Only, Gokhan Saki interrupted his training earlier in the week to discuss the upcoming bout with Badr Hari as well as a bunch of other issues. One of the big topics was K-1, and he says that he knows "many things" about K-1, but that he can't talk about them right now. This goes along with a lot of the rumblings we've been hearing behind the scenes.

When asked about MMA and if he is interested, his answer is simply, "Yes, of course, I'm a fighter, you know?" Saki mentioned maybe MMA, maybe Boxing, that he has been training in both, but that his "thing is K-1" and that is his main focus for right now. [source]

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Watch Part 1 of Badr Hari's "Profile" From Dutch TV

  • Published in Video

When I heard about this "profile" show, I made sure to speak to one of the producers, and was sad to find out it would not be found anywhere anytime soon with english subtitles. Thankfully, someone out there (YouTube user Undubately) decided to do the dirty work and go through subtitling the interview. This is just part one of three, but the other parts will soon follow! This is really top notch stuff, so watch it already. [source]

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Programming Note: Peter Graham Fights Cheick Kongo Tomorrow Night in Bellator

  • Published in Kickboxing

Graham

If you would have told me in 2006 that Peter Graham would be fighting in MMA regularly and that he'd not only do okay, but do pretty well, I'd probably not believe you. Not because Peter Graham isn't an awesome fighter, but because I just couldn't imagine the man behind the Rolling Thunder navigating the waters of wrestling and jiu-jitsu. Peter has always been known as an exciting, no-nonsense fighter who isn't afraid to pull out all of the stops.

Well, here we are in 2013 and the 38 year old Graham is making a serious go at Heavyweight MMA as he'll fight his second fight under the Bellator banner this Friday night against none other than Cheick Kongo. Kongo is himself known for being an exciting striker with a Kickboxing past, but then again, he doesn't have a KO win over Badr Hari with a Rolling Thunder, now does he? Graham's hard work and dedication to MMA have shown in his recent MMA outings, with him picking up a decision victory over Eric Prindle in his Bellator debut. He also isn't at all deterred from Kongo's size or reputation.

"I know who Cheick Kongo is but I haven't followed his career. He's been a great athlete for a long time. He's got a bit of kickboxing and wrestling skill. It'll be a good fight and I'm ready to go. I hope he doesn't underestimate me. I know he's been famous and had a big name for a while and, when it comes to MMA, I'm somewhat of a newcomer. I've come from the worst record to one of the best heavyweight win streaks there's been. I went from going 1-6 to 9 wins a row with 8 of them being KO's over some really good fighters. I want to get to the top and I'm not there yet, but I'm relentless. He needs to bring his A-game, which I'm sure he will. He's got that inner strength to keep going but I have it more than ever and I've worked harder than ever to make every performance better than the last."

Now if only we could see a Rolling Thunder in the Bellator cage, I'd be a happy, happy man.

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Warman's Kickfighting Show #54 and #55, Listen to Us Dissect the Kickboxing World

  • Published in Interviews

podcast

In episode 54 of the Warman Kickfighting Show I once again join Steven Wright to discuss the happenings of the Kickboxing and Muay Thai worlds. As Steven was in attendance at the UFC event over the weekend cornering Shane Roller of Team Takedown, which meant travel, this show which was supposed to be up sooner took a little bit longer, but it was worth it. We work out any technical issues we had the first time around and take a look at the recent K-1 MAX, It's Showtime and Thai Fight events, as well as SuperKombat and Mike Zambidis having a successful comeback fight after the loss to JWP.

It was a lot to cover and we did so in the course of an hour, with a look at how stars are made within the tournament format and how there are a lot of bright spots coming up in the kickboxing world, especially at 70kg. (Direct Download)

There is a whole lot to cover and we do our best, which leads us into the next episode! The next episode we take a long, hard look at the loss of Badr Hari, Gokhan Saki and possibly Tyrone Spong from the kickboxing world and just what that means. We also look at how Hari and Saki would potentially make a Boxing career work and what impact they could really have. There has been a lot of negative stuff going around focusing on lack of depth of talent and a lot of that simply is not true, as we go into depth on these issues and more. (Direct Download)

To subscribe to the Warman Kickfighting show search for "Lordgaul" on iTunes or head over to this blog.

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Rumors Point to Badr Hari Possibly Signing with GLORY Soon

  • Published in Glory

Badr Hari

This one has been brewing since the weekend, but there have been reports of Badr Hari and GLORY coming to an agreement and Badr Hari potentially fighting on the GLORY 16 Denver card. LiverKick became aware of this rumor earlier in the week but as is our policy, unless it comes from a firsthand source or there are multiple, independent sources to verify said information, we don't run it. Since the cat is out of the bag, we are now sharing this information with you.

This comes hot off of the heels of Badr Hari being found guilty last week in his trial and sentenced to 18 months in prison. Both sides filed for immediate appeals, which means that Badr Hari is not in jail, in fact he was in attendance as a "special guest" at this past weekend's K-1 World MAX Final Four event in Azerbaijan. Badr Hari's next scheduled fight is on May 17th in Holland against Ismael Londt, making a May 3rd booking in the United States seem a bit more unlikely. There is also the fact that obtaining a work visa in the United States would be a difficult task for Badr Hari considering the recent conviction.

We've reached out to GLORY for comment on this story and multiple sources have denied this rumor. The timing of such a signing seems way off, especially with his ongoing legal issues. There is this message on his official Facebook, but understand that Badr Hari doesn't handle his social media and will at times decide that someone that he commissioned to handle his social media is no longer the "official voice of Badr Hari."

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Peter Aerts vs. Dewey Cooper Featured on Global FC Card

  • Published in Kickboxing

GFC

The big story for many on the upcoming Global FC event is that Badr Hari will be fighting, but an interesting bit of information came out last week, with that being that Peter Aerts was set to fight Dewey Cooper on the event. I'll make this clear; I'm a huge Peter Aerts fan, always have been, always will be, and I want Peter Aerts to retire. I want Peter Aerts to enjoy his family, spend time with his children, run his gym, to live a long, healthy life.

That being said, a fight against Dewey Cooper seems about right for the time being. Dewey Cooper is an American fighter who has had a good deal of success here in the United States and abroad, but never was able to break through into that top echelon of fighters. Dewey Cooper is a fighter that can absolutely give Peter Aerts trouble, but is not a guy that I'm concerned about giving Aerts any sort of crazy concussion or really hurting Aerts. That isn't to say that Cooper can't win, because he could and he might, this is a pretty even fight. But, you know, Cooper is not Jamal Ben Saddik.

Here's a look at the rest of the card thus far.

  • Kamran Morovati vs. Darco Jeremic
  • Luke Jumeau vs. Hossein Mollamahdi
  • Gokhan Turkyilmaz vs. Voughn Donayre
  • Abbas Mollamahdi vs. Erkan Varol
  • Brian Douwes vs. Srdjan Seles
  • Singh Jaideep vs. Fatih Ulusoy
  • Peter Aerts vs. Dewey Cooper
  • Tournament: Arnold Oborotov vs. Peter Graham
  • Tournament:Badr Hari vs. Stefan Leko

 

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Lukas Podolski supports Badr Hari for his next fight October 16th in Dubai

  • Published in Kickboxing

German soccer player and Arsenal standout Lukas Podolski suffered a hamsting injury last year and began training boxing to hep with recovery. Looks like while he was training he may have watched a few Badr Hari fights and became a fan.

Here is a short video of him hitting the bag and wishing Badr luck on his GFC fight Oct 16th in Dubai against Patrice Quateron.

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2014: The Emergence of Kickboxing World Titles

  • Published in Kickboxing

GLORY 9

There is going to be some big changes in the Kickboxing world come this year, a change that has been a long-time coming and will see a good deal of pushback from hardcore fans, with that change being that both GLORY and K-1 are going to be pushing individual Championships over tournament champions this year. That isn’t to say that there won’t still be tournaments, as GLORY will be holding Contendership tournaments and K-1 has made mention of still running some tournaments, just not annual World Grand Prix and World MAX tournaments. For a sport that became popular for one-night tournaments this is a huge change.

This isn’t the first time that we’ve seen World Titles in Kickboxing, not by a long shot. In fact, there are a lot of fighters out there in the wild right now who hold one, if not multiple, World Titles through different sanctioning bodies. The ISKA, PKA, WKA, WAKO and many more still sanction World Championships much in the way that we see Boxing with fragmented titles not belonging to any one promoter. The truth of the matter is, though, that those “World Championships” are only as valuable as the promotion, the fighters competing for it and the Champion who holds it.

K-1 attempted to establish Championship titles in the past, with Badr Hari being the first K-1 Heavyweight Champion and Semmy Schilt being the first (and only) K-1 Super Heavyweight Champion. This was K-1’s attempt to move away from the traditional K-1 tournament format in 2007 only to see pushback from both fans and their television partners, keeping the K-1 World Grand Prix as the primary means of crowning a champion.

The announcement by GLORY that this year would see them crown champions across six weight classes is huge, as is K-1’s move under the K-1 Global banner to crown champions outside of the tournament format and to stick to it. While for fans the idea of big tournaments is still the most exciting way to crown champions, it is also a mess for promoters while we watch the established names from the original K-1 starting to retire or show signs of wear and tear. The truth is without huge backing like K-1 had in the 90’s and 00’s from major television networks, building stars in more regions than K-1 ever had to is a huge chore.

Fans will always love their hometown heroes, but with Japan no longer being the home of Kickboxing building stars is now a matter of a global struggle, where you have to do more than appear on Japanese game shows and talk show programs to build up a name. As we saw with GLORY’s Lightweight Tournament, no one is safe, even the unstoppable Giorgio Petrosyan. Establishing Champions makes for something consistent, something that you can sell to the world, a face and a name to go on a masthead. In the case of tournaments you can sell who you think will win, but being able to bill them as your Champion is very different.

Fans understand what a Champion is, will be able to latch onto a Champion and the promotion can market that Champion as the best in the world. I, for one, think that it’ll be a nice change of pace to see Champions established in Kickboxing and for those titles to mean something. The unpredictability of tournaments is exciting and all, but if Kickboxing really wants to grow as a sport it needs to be more inviting, it needs to be more stable, which is exactly what having Champions will do for it.

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GLORY 16 Denver to Feature Heavyweight Contender Tournament

  • Published in Glory

GLORY

This week is going to have a lot of it dedicated to GLORY 14 Zagreb, but we came across this interesting bit of information over the past few days. GLORY has announced that GLORY 16 will happen in Denver but we've yet to hear exactly what will be at Denver. The rumored GLORY event in Denver for earlier this year was supposed to feature Light Heavyweights, but as we've seen, that is now in GLORY 15 Istanbul instead. So what does that mean we'll see at GLORY 16 Denver?

According to our sources, GLORY 16 Denver will feature a 4-man Heavyweight contender tournament, much like what we are seeing at GLORY 14 Zagreb with the Middleweight Contender tournament. Seeing as Heavyweight is one of GLORY's deepest and most talent-rich divisions you can definitely look forward to some big names taking place in the tournament. Of course there is the unsubstantiated rumor started by Badr Hari's camp that he'll be involved in GLORY 16 Denver, but for right now, don't get your hopes up.

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Liverkick Throwback: Badr Hari Vs Alexey Ignashov 1

  • Published in Kickboxing

The world of kickboxing has a rich history to fall back upon so we here at LiverKick figure, why not? Why not give a glimpse into some of the fights from the past that have made up this wonderful sport and tie it all in to the present. The kids on the Instagram and Twitter like to call Thursdays "Throwback Thursdays," I'm just going to say that this is a LiverKick Throwback.

Today we are going back to when Badr Hari was a scrawny 18 year old still training with  Thom Harinck, and Alexey Ignashov was a nightmare opponent for any heavyweight fighter. This was a big step up in competition for Badr considering he hadn't really fought any big names yet, he took the fight on only a few days notice and Ignashov had already fought and beat pretty much everyone including Peter Aerts, Remy Bonjasky, and Daniel Ghita. This fight took place on It's Showtime 2003 Amsterdamn in front of Badr's home crowd, and to be honest for an 18 year old fighting a much bigger, more experienced and better opponent he was doing okay, until 2:55 seconds into the 3rd round when Iggy drove a straight right into Hari's sternum which he couldn't recover from. After the fight was called off Ignashov rushes over and helps Badr up, rubs his chest for him and shows him how to get his breath back, Iggy is always such a class act. Badr Hari avenged this loss twice later in his career once in Yokohama, Japan in 2010, and once in Moscow, Russia in 2013, but he was still never able to finish Ignashov even when Iggy was well past his prime.

 

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